How do I request a Cash Equivalent Transfer Value (CETV) from the ERPF?

You may be asked by the court for specific information about your LGPS benefits for divorce/dissolution purposes. You will need an estimate of your Cash Equivalent Value (CETV) of your pension rights. This is because divorcing couples are required to disclose all their financial interests to each other and to the Court.  The CETV is the capitalized value of your pension benefits. It provides a convenient way of assessing the value of your pension in relation to your other assets

You can download a form to request a CETV below:

ERPF Divorce Information Letter (pdf 165kb opens in new window)

After reading the information provided you should complete and return the form to the ERPF.  Details of your CETV and other relevant information will then be issued to you.

A CETV quotation is normally provided within 3 months of the initial request being received and you get one quotation free each year.  Any other costs for supplying information or complying with a court order will be recovered from you and/ or you ex-spouse or ex-civil partner in accordance with a schedule of charges available from the ERPF.

What could happen to my pension?

There are a number of ways that a court could agree to split your pension benefits:

Offsetting pension rights

You can offset the value of your pension rights against the value of other financial assets in your divorce /dissolution settlement.  For example, you could keep your pension and your ex-spouse or ex-civil partner could get a larger share of the value of the house.

An Earmarking Order

Earmarking is a term used to describe special attachment orders that are made by the Court.

When an attachment or earmarking order is made, the pension still remains yours, but the ERPF is required to make some form of payment to your former spouse when your benefits become payable.

The Court can order that your former spouse receive one, or a combination, of the following benefits:

  • all, or part, of your Local Government pension (this does not apply in Scotland)
  • all, or part, of your Local Government lump sum retirement grant.  In this instance the Court can order that you commute your pension, up to the maximum amount permitted, into a lump sum (but this power does not apply to divorces / dissolutions in Scotland)
  • all, or part, of any lump sum paid in the event of your death

You can still transfer your benefits to another pension arrangement on leaving the LGPS, as long as your new pension provider can accept the earmarking order.

Earmarking has limitations and is not widely used. As the pension rights remain with you, your ex-spouse or ex-civil partner must wait for you to retire or die to receive the earmarked benefits. If your former spouse or civil partner remarries or enters into a new civil partnership an Earmarking Order against pension payments, but not lump sums (unless the Order directs otherwise), would cease and the full pension would be restored to you. Pension payments to your former spouse or civil partner would cease on your death, although any earmarked lump sum death grant would then become payable to your ex-spouse or ex-civil partner.

A Pension Sharing Order?

If the Court issues a Pension Sharing Order (qualifying agreement in Scotland) part of your benefits are transferred to your ex‐spouse or ex‐civil partner. They will keep that share, in their own right, even if your or their circumstances change. This is known as a Pension Credit it can be left in the scheme and is paid from Normal Pension Age. Alternatively, the pension credit can be transferred to another qualifying pension scheme.

Your pension and any lump sum will be reduced by the amount transferred to your ex‐spouse or ex‐civil partner.  This is known as a Pension Debit and it will be increased in line with the rise in the cost of living between the date it was first calculated and the date your benefits are paid. When your benefits are paid, the revalued amount of the Pension Debit will be deducted from your retirement benefits. Alternatively, you can still transfer your remaining benefits to another pension arrangement on leaving the LGPS. If you transfer within the LGPS, your new fund will reduce your benefits by the Pension Debit at retirement.

  • Your ex-wife, ex-husband or ex-civil partner will cease to be entitled to a widow’s, widower’s or civil partner’s pension should you die before them.
  • Any children’s pension paid to an eligible child in the event of your death will not be affected by your divorce or dissolution.
  • If you have said that you would like your ex-wife, ex-husband or ex-civil partner to receive any lump sum death grant payable on your death by completing and returning a nomination form, this will remain in place unless you change it. If you wish to make a change please complete the Death Grant Expression of Wish for below:
    Death Grant Expression of Wish form (pdf 1mb opens in new window)
    The court may, however, issue an earmarking order stating that all or part of any lump-sum death grant is payable to your ex-spouse or ex-civil partner.

If your LGPS benefits are subject to a Pension Sharing Order and you remarry, enter into a new civil partnership or into a cohabiting partnership, any spouse's pension, civil partner’s pension or eligible cohabiting partner’s pension payable following your death will also be reduced.

If you remarry or enter into a new civil partnership and then divorce or dissolve your civil partnership again, your remaining pension rights can be subject to further division, although a Pension Sharing Order cannot be issued if an Earmarking Order has already been issued against your LGPS pension rights. Similarly, an Earmarking Order cannot be issued if your pension benefits are already subject to a Pension Sharing Order in respect of the marriage / civil partnership.

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